Logan County Sheriff Wallace Whittaker warned residents this week of a paid of different phone scams that have been reported in the region.
In recent weeks two different phone “scams” have been reported in the Western Kentucky area.
Both scams involve subjects calling residents and alleging they represent federal agencies.
One scam informs you, the caller is representing the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation). The caller then says you have a debt or fine that must be paid; and that if you do not pay, you will be arrested. In addition to this, the number displayed on your phone may actually be the FBI field office in Bowling Green.
The Sheriff’s office has contacted the FBI and they have stated there are subjects “spoofing” the FBI Bowling Green field office number. Further, no agents of the FBI ever contact the public for payment of debts or fines.
Another phone scam involves callers claiming to represent the IRS (Internal Revenue Service). Like in the other phone scam, the caller informs you have a debt that must be paid to IRS, and you risk being arrested if you do not pay.
Both of these calls should be ignored and residents should hang up immediately. There is no legal way to make someone pay a debt, real or otherwise without state or federal court interaction, The sheriff is reminding all subjects who receive these calls, the person on the other end does not represent any agency.
These types of scams have been reported for several years, and Law Enforcement agencies believe most scams are done by the following:
Subjects obtain phone numbers through various sources, some of which may be legal. The “scammers” then call large amounts of phone numbers trying to get people to pay an imagined debt. Even if just a few people pay, the scam artists make money. In many instances the callers are overseas and masking their real phone number with a phone number in your area code. This tactic is called “spoofing.”
If anyone is trying to collect a debt from you legally you would receive “bills’ in the mail. Legal debt collection agencies know there is a process to follow. This process would involve you being served with legal documents by some type of Law Enforcement officer.
You should never pay any debt over the phone, unless you know who exactly you are dealing with.
To contact OJ Stapleton, email [email protected] or call 270-726-8394.